Utah State rallies to save at-large hopes

March, 13, 2009
Utah State probably saved its NCAA tournament hopes by coming back from a 13-point deficit at the half to beat New Mexico State 71-70 in the WAC tournament semifinals in Reno, Nev.

Utah State just won on Tyler Newbold's jumper with four seconds left. New Mexico State took a 31-30 lead with about five minutes to play in the first half and led the rest of the way -- until Newbold's game winner. USU will play the winner of Friday night's other quarterfinal game, Nevada or Louisiana Tech, in Saturday's championship game.

With an RPI rating of 30 going into the game, Utah State is definitely in the at-large discussion. But it has only one victory over an RPI top-50 foe (beating Utah at home) and 25 of its 28 victories came against RPI sub-100 opponents.

With such little meat on its résumé, it's probably very wise for Utah State to win the WAC tournament and reap that automatic NCAA bid. Just to be sure.



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